Trade shows are a great way to market your business or product to a relevant audience that's actually looking for what you have to offer. However, starting out with that first exhibit can be daunting, and it's easy to make mistakes or not fully capitalize on the opportunity in front of you. While you're probably already on top of getting a booth rental for your exhibit, there are a few other things that you should think about now to maximize your efforts throughout the show and in the days afterward.

Create Your Booth Design Early

As soon as you secure your booth rental, it's time to start developing your marketing design. The sooner you start this planning, the more effective your display can be. Make sure you know what the dimensions are for your booth first, that way you know exactly how much space you have to work with. And remember - you're not limited to the booth surface area. If you want to catch attention, think vertical too. Build your displays and marketing materials upward if you need to, because vertical space is usable space as well.

Work with a marketing specialist to determine how best to present your brand. Make sure you know what your objectives are for this trade show. Are you trying to create buzz about your newest product or just wanting to secure your business as a player in the marketplace? Focus on that message in everything that you incorporate into the design.

Let People Know You'll Be There

The more people that attend the trade show, the better. Letting prospective clients, customers, and others know that your business will be there may help to draw more people in. Add your booth number and the show information to all of your email signatures, phone recordings, and website pages so that people know that the show is coming and exactly how to find you.

Make Sure You Have A Follow Up Plan

As soon as the show is over, it's time to put a follow-up plan into action. By incorporating some form of customer data capture into your booth, you can gather email addresses, phone numbers, or mailing addresses for those who stop by your booth. Use that information for a targeted marketing campaign that reinforces the information from the show and shows those who attended that you appreciate their time. Consider offering a promotion, like a percentage discount off your product as a thank you for visiting your booth. Don't put this off, because those first two or three days after the show are prime time for reinforcing your company's marketing message.